WHAT WAS THE CFR SAYING BEFORE THE IRAQ INVASION OF 2003?
...Q. That’s been your view all along? Not only that war is inevitable, but that we should launch it?
A. Yes. It is strategically sound and morally just. The Middle East is a strategic region for us. It is where oil does play into all this. It is not about oil prices or controlling the oil as some conspiracy theorists claim. It is about stability in the region. Saddam has been very destabilizing, to say the least— in his attempts to unseat his neighbors and what he has done to his own people. The continuation of the Iraqi regime has been very difficult for our partners, the Saudis, the Jordanians, the Kuwaitis, the Turks, and the Gulf states. Over the years, they have said our Iraq policy has been a very hard policy for them to sustain.
Strategically trying to get rid of one of the most destabilizing forces in the Middle East is a good idea. But the moral aspect doesn’t get as much play as it should. What’s gone on in Iraq to the Iraqi people has been horrendous. Prisons with children of political prisoners being tortured and abused— many younger than ten years old. Just imagine. And sanctions have strengthened the reign of this maniacal leader. We put sanctions into place for very good reasons: we didn’t think they would last long, and we thought they were more just than war. But it turns out we were wrong. And this policy which we have supported and have actively defended has contributed to the aching misery of the Iraqi people. It allowed Saddam Hussein to consolidate his power and use it to horrible ends.
When Secretary Albright said it was not us causing the suffering of the Iraqi people, but Saddam, technically she was right. And everyone in the region agreed; but what they couldn’t understand was why we pursued a policy knowing that Saddam would use it to his advantage to torture his people. We were complicit. We have got to get rid of this monster. He is our Frankenstein.
Q. You mean because of money from the sale of oil not filtering down?
A. Aside from the money that goes to reparations and to administrate northern Iraq, all economic resources get directed into the coffers of Saddam Hussein, who then decides how to distribute it. It increases his power. You don’t have the free flow of trade. The results are horrendous.
The American people won’t go to war unless they feel it is in our national interest. Strategically I think this is in our national interest, but you won’t get sustained commitment to a war unless it is also morally just. Saddam is unique. He is a strategic and moral menace. For that reason, it is important for us to go after him. It doesn’t imply that anyone else is necessarily next. This is a uniquely awful problem.
So the the USA invades Iraq and makes the region more unstable, and does indeed get the oil as claimed by some conspiracy theorists. Meanwhile Bronson is now at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, which looks like yet another globalization love-in receiving Rockefeller grants and sponsorship by JP Morgan